Four people are dead after a gunman killed his ex-fiancee, a police officer and two others at Mercy Hospital in Chicago on Monday (November 19).
Authorities have identified 32-year-old Juan Lopez as the suspected killer. ER doctor Tamara O’Neal and Chicago police officer Samuel Jimenez are among the dead. Jimenez, a married father-of-three, had just completed his officer probationary period.
The other woman who was shot by Lopez was a pharmaceutical technician at the hospital. Her name has not officially been released.
O’Neal reported for work just before 3:30 p.m. when she was confronted by Lopez. There was an alleged “verbal altercation” between the two in the parking lot, according to Chicago Police Department Superintendent Eddie Johnson. A third person, who knew at least one of the two, subsequently attempted to intervene.
Johnson then says, “At that time, the male individual lifted up his shirt and displayed a handgun.” The acquaintance then ran inside the hospital and 911 was summoned. After the call came in, that’s when shots began firing. Witness James Gray saw Lopez and O'Neal talking in the parking lot and the gun being drawn.
Gray told ABC7, “The gentleman turned around and shot three times in the chest. Once she fell to the ground, he turned around and shot her three more times.”
Officer Jimenez responded to an officer’s assistance call and was one of multiple officers who ran toward the gunfire. According to Johnson, Jimenez wasn’t even assigned to the call but responded anyway.
The second woman was shot as she got off an elevator and reportedly had nothing to do with the tragic incident. A SWAT team officer later found Lopez inside the hospital and shot him in the head after a back-and-forth. Jimenez was taken to the University of Chicago Medical Center in critical condition and died hours later from his injuries.
O'Neal and Lopez were reportedly planning to wed on October 27, however O'Neal called off the wedding in September.
Our thoughts are with the victims and their families during this difficult time.
Photo: KAMIL KRZACZYNSKI/AFP/Getty Images